It has been a fantastic day of trade for the Australian share market, seeing its best day since 1997, closing 5.8 per cent higher. Wholesale distribution and marketing company Metcash (ASX:MTS) saw their shares soar today over 25 per cent. Shares in Gold Road Resources (ASX:GOR) also saw a huge rise of over 20 per cent. Meanwhile, shares in commercial property giant Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (ASX:URW) continue to fall after reporting the impact of says Covid-19 on its retail portfolio. The best-performing sector is Materials, while the worst performing sector is REITS.
The S&P/ASX200 index
At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 291 points higher to finish at 5,293.
Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 800 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 87 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a lift of 237 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 232 point rise tomorrow morning.
Local economic news
Price rises in Sydney and Melbourne drove a 3.9 per cent rise in residential property prices in the December quarter 2019, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
Residential property prices rose 4.7 per cent in Sydney and 5.2 per cent in Melbourne, with both cities recording a second consecutive quarter of strong growth. Prices rose in all capital cities except Darwin.
Johns Lyng Group (ASX:JLG) has extended its contract with Western Australia’s major local insurer for a further five years. The Home Repairer Service Relationship Agreement is for the provision of domestic property insurance repair work on up to 1,000 properties per quarter, covering both business-as-usual (BaU) claims, and claims made during peak events such as storms and floods. Shares in Johns Lyng Group (ASX:JLG) closed 0.99 per cent higher at $2.04.
Cochlear (ASX:COH) today announced that the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, DC has affirmed the US District Court award of $268 million US in patent infringement damages against Cochlear and its US subsidiary Cochlear Americas.
Afterpay (ASX:APT) has finalised an agreement with the California Department of Business Oversight (DBO) to settle a regulatory matter and have agreed to pay $1 million US in refunds and fines.
Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) is working with the Government of Mongolia to ensure Oyu Tolgoi is operating in accordance with the restrictions the Mongolian authorities have put in place to contain the spread of COVID-19. Since January the movement of goods and people within Mongolia have been restricted within and across its border and this has further escalated recently as the first case of COVID-19 has occurred in the country.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector was Financials adding 9.2 per cent while the worst performing sector was REITS, the only sector in the red, shedding 2.4 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Gold Road Resources (ASX:GOR) closed 21.1 per cent higher at 97 cents. Silver Lake Resources (ASX:SLR) and Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is oOh!Media (ASX:OML) closed 16.5 per cent lower at $1.03. Followed by shares in Charter Hall Group (ASX:CHC) and Domino Pizza Enterprises (ASX:DMP).
Higher: Japan’s Nikkei has added 1.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has also added 1.1 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.4 per cent.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,502 an ounce.
Iron ore price lost 0.9 per cent at US$90.88
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 0.9 per cent.
Light crude is US$1.22 up at US$29.92 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 61.22 US cents.